Michele Hart

Michele Hart has been a dedicated volunteer in a myriad of ways with the ALA in Massachusetts for the past 12 years. She is a strong advocate for the mission through her efforts with Better Breathers clubs, Freedom From Smoking, asthma education, clean air advocacy and special events.

Michele began volunteering as a special event team captain for the hospital in which she works. She became a Freedom From Smoking facilitator and has facilitated clinics helping adults quit smoking in hospital and community settings for the past 10 years.

Michele has also been an active member of the Pioneer Valley Asthma Coalition for the past 10 years. As a member of the coalition, Michele has volunteered her time and expertise on many occasions in the community including providing educational programs to school teachers, students and parents, collaborating with school nurses, participating in health fairs, working with nursing students and joining the fight against the proposed Biomass plants in Western Massachusetts.

As co-chair for the Healthy Schools Committee for the Pioneer Valley Asthma Coalition (PVAC), Michele has been instrumental in securing a partnership with the Elms College Nursing program to train their nursing students in the Open Airways for Schools and Kickin’ Asthma programs. The Elms College nursing students have delivered programs over the past 3 years reaching than 100 students with asthma. Michele has strengthened this partnership with a new offering this year that allows nursing students to observe Pulmonary Nurse Clinicians for one day during their in-patient rotation.

Michele has been a Better Breathers Club Coordinator for 4 years. She has been part of an educational series directed at teaching people with chronic lung disease how to breathe, take their medications correctly and cope with their disease.

Western Massachusetts has a very high asthma incidence rate. Michele goes into the community to give lectures and facilitate educational programs on asthma as well as environmental issues that impact the communities disproportionately impacted by lung disease. Michele has a unique ability of interacting with parents of children with asthma and presenting information in an easy to understand format. She encourages her audience to ask questions and participate in discussion.

Michele has been a strong visual and vocal opponent of the proposed Biomass plants in Western Massachusetts. Michele has been involved in the ALA’s Clean Air Campaign. She attended a kickoff event in Boston and a Farmers’ Market in Springfield, where she helped capture postcard signatures encouraging Massachusetts political leaders to support the Clean Air Act. She has also submitted letters to the editors of local newspapers supporting clean air.